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Reaching Out: The Guide To Writing A Terrific Dear Birthmother Letter

Nelson HandelEastern Edge Press; $17.95 paper/$14.95 CD-ROM



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Composing a “Dear Birthmother” letter was the hardest writing assignment I’ve ever faced. Self-administered Pergonal shots seemed less daunting. But my husband and I had reached a crucial point where our goal and our endocrinologist’s weren’t the same anymore. He wanted a pregnancy; we wanted a child. It was time to move on. So I sat down at my computer and typed: “Dear Birthmother,…” I felt doomed.

At the time, the only available resources were general guides to open adoption. They were excellent overall, but we needed more handholding for this particular task, more specific examples. Now there’s Reaching Out: The Guide to Writing a Terrific Dear Birthmother Letter, by Nelson Handel. Newly published in paperback, this guide is also available on CD-Rom for the electronically minded.

Handel writes clearly, thoughtfully, and with a sense of humor, gently cajoling prospective adoptive parents away from common errors of wording and tone. With loads of examples and step-by-step instructions, Reaching Out will help you present yourself, your partner, your home, and your hopes in the best possible light. Writing that “Dear Birthmother” letter may never be enjoyable, but with Handel’s encouragement and advice, you can give it a good shot.

–by Amy Klatzkin, a contributing editor to Adoptive Families.


Copyright 2002 Adoptive Families magazine. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.

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